Under the curse of Orochi, the great demon serpent reborn every 300 years, Japan has been shrouded in clouds for as long as anyone can remember…
The era of the samurai is at an end, and carrying swords has been outlawed. To combat the rising crime rates, an inescapable prison was built in the middle of Lake Biwa. When brothers Tenka, Soramaru and Chutaro Kumo are hired to capture and transport offenders to their final lodgings in this prison, they unexpectedly find themselves faced with a greater destiny than any of them could have imagined.
I really liked this first volume, and definitely had a few friends in mind who I knew would enjoy this series. My favourite thing about this volume was the relationships between all of the characters in this story, both past and present, and I’m excited to see these relationships grow throughout the rest of the series.
I find it a little funny that this is listed as shojo on Goodreads, because it gives me more of a shonen vibe given the art-style and tropes. This has happened with a handful of shonen series listed on Goodreads, which makes me wonder if it’s possible that they’ve been shelved this way accidentally? If this is in fact actually a shojo due to the minor romance subplot of the story, then I apologize, but also like that’s awesome, because I’ve never read a shojo like this in my life. I know this might be a weird comparison but I liked this, the way I loved Beyblade and Yugi Oh growing up…because the bond between these characters was already so strong from the beginning, and there are overlapping storylines that help build the world. I’d compare the romance subplot to something like Ray and Mariah (Rei and Mao in the Japanese version) in Beyblade. It’s just enough where it doesn’t pull the reader away from all the other things happening in the story. It raises the stakes! Plus the story was cute. I don’t want to spoil anything, so I’ll leave it at that.
I had so much fun with this story, and loved the world building and characters so I gave it a full 5-star rating!
I think a better comparison than Beyblade would be a film like 47 Ronin, since it has that romantic element to it but it’s an action, adventure with fantasy thrown into the mix. So if you’ve seen that film, you’ll definitely like this manga.
In Disney’s live-action film “Beauty and the Beast,” Belle, a bright, beautiful, and independent young woman, is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince inside. Soft, warm, bright colors show Belle’s optimistic view of the world in this full-color manga-style graphic novel, which explores Belle’s innermost thoughts as she learns that true beauty comes from within.
Just as lovely as The Beast’s Tale. I found this one leans in more towards the live-action films dialogue and plot points versus how The Beast’s Tale blends both films together, but it was still enjoyable to read. What I loved about both stories is that the reader gets insight into what both Belle and the Beast are feeling in each of these scenes. It’s really sweet, especially when they’re read back to back. Gaston seemed like more of a jerk, if that’s even possible? He was almost comedically irritating, which was fantastic because I really think that was needed without Le Fou singing his praises throughout like he does in the films. Pulling attention away from his character in the last book was a bit confusing, mainly because of have the films memorized, but I almost wish that in Belle’s version they kept the scene where he ends up face down in the mud after his failed proposal. He’s a character you love to hate. Overall I really liked Belle’s narration, and seeing the progression behind her and the Beast’s growing relationship. Oh, and the iconic “I love you” scene, I was so happy it was included!
In Disney’s live-action film “Beauty and the Beast,” Belle, a bright, beautiful, and independent young woman, is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince inside. Dark, cool, muted colors show the Beast’s pessimistic view of the world in this full-color manga-style graphic novel, which explores the Beast’s struggle as he tries to move on from his past and learn what it is to love.
I liked how the manga blended both versions of the movie, animated and live-action, and managed to keep and pull together many of my favourite scenes. Beauty and the Beast has always been a favourite of mine, and I think this manga is an excellent introduction to the story for those who haven’t watched any of the films yet, or a great gift for readers who are, like myself, absolutely obsessed with Disney. I enjoyed the artwork, and thought the backgrounds were really lovely. It’s unusual for me to read a manga in full colour, and I really enjoyed it. I’m not sure if it’s because the story is set in France but the way the Beast’s half of the story is set up, made me think of the popular anime The Rose of Versaille, which is also a favourite of mine.
I felt a few key, or iconic scenes and characters being absent pulled me away from the story a bit, but I realized that because this is the beasts perspective, he wouldn’t have known about Gaston or the towns people until they arrived at the castle. So I think if I were to go back, I would read Belle’s story first and THEN the Beast’s. Overall well done, and I can’t wait to read Belle’s half of the story.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Thank you Disney Manga and Tokyopop for giving me the opportunity to review this series. I was absolutely thrilled when I found out I was accepted to review both books in the series. Thank you so much!